Trees on both sides of road

Allied Irish Banks make better decisions with visual insights from Mapa Research

Stephen Sherwin, Head of Mobile Development at Allied Irish Banks, shares his experience of using the visual insights from Mapa Research to feed into his project plans, to make changes within AIB’s mobile banking app.


Creating mobile banking solutions that effectively integrate convenience and security has always been a challenge for banks. When Allied Irish Banks (AIB) approached Mapa Research, they were planning to introduce new features to their mobile banking app that would enhance security, such as adding additional levels of authentication. Whilst they had spoken to several security vendors on different solutions that were available, to find the perfect balance between security and convenience they needed to know how other banks were dealing with this.


Mapa is in a unique position to provide a broad overview of digital banking topics, as we hold live bank accounts across the world and can therefore show clients precisely what their competitors – and providers in other markets – are doing in a particular area.

Showing AIB what the security and authentication process looked like amongst UK, USA, Australia, Sweden and Spain meant replicating the user journey on our range of devices. Mapa then delivered a high-quality report detailing security solutions from a wide range of UK and international banks. The screenshots of each approach made the document easily digestible, but also provided unquestionable insight into the visual and ‘soft’ features of each solution.

“We still refer to Mapa’s ‘Login and authentication’ report even 10 months later. It is great to be able to see what the other banks are doing to help the thought process, and it is a great resource,” says Stephen Sherwin, Head of Mobile Development at AIB. “It’s one thing to understand the technology being used by other providers, but a different thing to really see how it’s being implemented – the design, the layout, how easy it is for users. For us, that was the most important thing: security without added complexity.”


Mapa’s report was shared between all the relevant teams involved in the internal project, and it played a key part in informing AIB’s decision making.

“Mapa gave us great insight into what other banks were doing – both visually and from a customer experience perspective – and it was great to be able to physically see the different journeys and approaches. They told us what to avoid as much as what to consider, and helped us back up some of our previously held assumptions,” said Stephen. “Mapa certainly delivered a key piece of the jigsaw puzzle to our internal project.”

The AIB security project is ongoing, with Mapa Research still feeding into the process.

For more information on Mapa’s Bespoke Consultancy services, do not hesitate to get in touch with us.

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